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Open mike 03/05/2013

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, May 3rd, 2013 - 59 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

Open mike is your post. For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the link to Policy in the banner).

Step right up to the mike…

59 comments on “Open mike 03/05/2013 ”

  1. Jenny 1

    Auckland Coal Action. Next Meeting: Saturday 4th May

    Place: Quaker Meeting House: 113 Mt Eden Rd

    Time: 1 00 – 4 00 pm

    Follow up of letter to Fonterra – progress?

    Contacting members prior to meetings.
    Leaflet to residents of Waitoa and Te Awamutu?
    Proposed: film screening of Thin Ice as a fundraiser in collaboration with 350.org

    Green Party’s All Party Climate Change Conference June 7th. Should we be there?

    T Shirts – progress?

    Suggested: A review of the wording of bumper stickers. Would “Coal-Free New Zealand” ( a statement of commitment to make NZ Coal-Free) be stronger than “Proud to be Coal Free” (which is an individual’s claim about themselves). As we plan to share these across all NZ anti-coal groups – could we consult with other groups re the prefered wording?

    Targeted communication re carbon bubble and the science that says we can’t burn 2/3rds of the reserves we have already – so why drill/mine for more?

    From 2 00 pm onwards:

    Mangatangi campaign in a wider context.

    ACA involvement in Bathurst campaign

    Mangatawhiri campaign matters:
    The hearing: Our presence – what form will this take?
    Sign-up of people to Coal-Free Mangatawhiri – progress?
    Situation re billboards at Mangatangi.
    Beyond the hearing: Planning future actions?

    School boiler collaboration with Gen Zero – progress?

    Divestment as a strategy

  2. karol 2

    Celebrating 20 years of the World Wide Web, the first web page has been recreated.

  3. Memo from Crosby Textor

    To John Key

    Subject: So long …

    The relationship between this firm and the National Party has been a very rewarding one. Financially for us and in political terms for the National Party.

    Our charges have been higher than the industry standard but this is because of the difficulty of the various assignments we have received. We were required to make Don Brash appear human and we nearly succeeded. We were then required to make a merchant banker whose wealth was directly related to the manipulation of the New Zealand dollar, whose memory is appalling and who has succeeded in politics only because he has psychopathic tendencies appeal to ordinary New Zealanders. And we were forced to make a party with misogynist, racist and homophobic tendencies attractive to women, Maori and homosexuals.

    We have succeeded beyond our wildest dreams. But we have a reputation to protect and so we are discontinuing our relationship with your party.

    The reason is that there is no way we can repair the damage caused by Aaron Gilmour’s behaviour. We have spent huge resources creating the fiction that National MPs are ordinary people who are respectful of workers rather than overbearing arrogant toffs which they have traditionally been. We had persuaded enough people to believe that this reality was not true but in one drunken evening Mr Happy Gilmour has destroyed the work of many years and it is irreparable.

    The firm’s directors cannot tolerate any further association with the group of self centred, arrogant, misguided mess that is the current National Party as the firm has a reputation to protect.

    So long and thanks for all the money …

    • ianmac 3.1

      RNZ. Mr Key accepts Mr Gilmore’s word that he did not threaten the waiter with the PM office and sacking. And no complaint received from the hotel. Clearly the friend who was embarrassed by Mr Gilmore’s actions must have fabricated the story. Mr Gilmore earlier said that he could not remember what he had said but obviously he had been very polite and the others were rowdy.
      And the Gilmore brain fade is OK as it fits the PM lead.

      • Paul 3.1.1

        RNZ have forgotten how to be serious journalists and ask hard questions.
        You’ll get tougher questioning from Sean Plunket and John Campbell than a lot of the timid ones presently claiming to be journalists at RNZ.

        • prism

          Give your example Paul. This is of interest, as we need to monitor, fairly, the effectiveness and devotion to their journalistic task of Radionz. If criticising, state the occasion and content so we can listen.

    • Paul 3.2

      Aaron Gilmour sounds like quite a revolting character. In the Herald today, this from a fellow diner at the restaurant.

      “We were sitting about 5m from them. Right from the beginning, pretty much [from] when he [Gilmore] walked in he was already being quite arrogant – whistling at the waiters and clicking his fingers to get them over there to give them more drinks and stuff like that,” Mr Rangi said.”It was quite awkward, the restaurant was nice and quiet.”

      Right from the beginning….he was whistling at waiters and clicking his fingers to summon them.
      So he did not need alcohol to turn himself into a boorish prat.

      • Tim 3.2.1

        “So he did not need alcohol to turn himself into a boorish prat.”
        No you’re correct – he’s just a natural born boor.
        Think of of a trio of boors – arrogant, bogoted, born-to-rule, holier-than-thou, mean spirited, nouveau riche, arse licking future Nat careerists:
        They hang together like flies sticking to shit. Think Aaron Gilmore, Simon Bridges and Todd McClay

    • Draco T Bastard 3.3

      😆 😈

      Well done.

    • Rogue Trooper 3.4

      a scarlet letter mickey

  4. “Wrexham call centre staff fly to New Zealand to cover night shifts”


    That’s a UK company sending it’s employees here on a working holiday.
    You can’t employ from outside NZ if the job can be filled by kiwis, but you can set up shop, pay no income taxes and be immune to employment laws.

    What’s in it for us?

    • karol 4.1

      Maybe NZ employers should follow suit – send NZ call centre staff to the Mediterranean to cover NZ nights?

      • prism 4.1.1

        Like it, an employment option: within these time zones, where would you like to work for six months tours of duty? And not as a grunt type tour of duty, a foot soldier, but as a member of the cossetted class with your own nice air conditioned seat and office.

    • prism 4.2

      The Allen
      The speaker did say something about getting NZs included, in passing. Surely anyone working within NZ is covered by our employment laws,. whatever they now are?

      • The Al1en 4.2.1

        “Surely anyone working within NZ is covered by our employment laws,. whatever they now are?”

        I don’t know about that. It’s not a NZ company and they’re not taxpayers, does employment law cover what tourists do on their holiday?
        I know the poor seamen that regularly wash up abused on our shores are covered, but that’s probably quite a different thing.

    • karol 5.1

      Oh dear – brilliant graphic; not so brilliant Anadarko.

      • freedom 5.1.1

        We won’t see it on TV or in the papers but maybe we will see it in Parliament next week?
        ( hint hint to the MP’s out there ) i suggest something effective, say in a billboard scale held aloft across the entire opposition benches.

        In all seriousness though, this simple image deserves widespread public exposure and a very public statement from National saying how it’s all good and there is nothing to be concerned about. Then perhaps Simon Bridges can qualify how permits were given for this most fragile of regions. We must have it on the record now, for when the inevitable destruction occurs later the memory holes will be cavernous.

        hat tip to Trillion for the image btw

    • Arfamo 5.2

      An oil platform in the Pegasus zone will be an ecological disaster waiting to happen.

      • BM 5.2.1


        • King Kong

          Because some breathless hippy says so

        • McFlock

          probability over time

          Plus the fact the nats are involved, of course. They’d discover that plugging a well built by the lowest bidder is not as simple as snapping your fingers and whistling.

        • Arfamo

          Because it’s in a plate boundary area and I don’t care what fail-safe methods they say they have to prevent blowout in a mega-thrust quake they would probably be about as worthless as the failsafes at Deepwater Horizon and Fukushima (where nobody factored in their safety designs that the land would drop). We won’t have the capacity to manage a large earthquake, tsunami, and gigantic, gushing oil leak.

  5. prism 6

    There is a big risk if Kiwibank was made a stand-alone entity away from NZPost, for governments with short-term views to sell it. (Disbelievers, there are such things!) It will soon be worth a billion, and be a nice boost to a government’s balance sheet. Jim Anderton was talking about this on Radionz this am, and he sounds like the Voice of Wisdom, really, after listening to the present conmen (he embraces she) in the present government.

    And getting mail deliveries three days a week will work as well as milk delivery of three days a week, NOT for most. Some subsidy, through accepting less profitability by gummint, would be right behaviour with a five day delivery, suggestion to miss Monday when business letters would be low.

    It could also be that more care for the company’s effectiveness and efficiency will bring costs down. What the Queenstown debacle revealed, when the curtains opened, should have been the main actors with guilty faces from top management down – some with egg on their faces, others pie, according to preference. Damn disgusting and it occurs to me that perhaps they have focussed too much of their attention and expertise on selling mail systems overseas, which they have done as an arm of the company. What effect this at home cesspit will do to their image of selling a modern styled process when learned by the distant customers, will likely be a stain on their trousers.

  6. ianmac 7

    The Remuneration Authority, which sets the pay for city, district and regional councils, has increased the national pay pool by 8.9 per cent, meaning some councillors will pocket rises of up to $16,000 after this year’s elections.
    Wouldn’t it be lovely if wage and salary earners were paid by the same standards used by the Authority? You would get what would be deserved like 8.9%.
    Oh well be really grateful with your 1% increase you workers. Times are tough you know!

  7. prism 8

    I referred to Zelda D’Aprano in Australia in a comment about International Workers Day and thought I’d look up Google to see what she has been up to – and find it much.

    For women interested in those who worked hard for themselves and other women to gain fair treatment and have better lives, here is a link about this lady which is just one on a page full under her name.

  8. Rogue Trooper 9

    Food Poverty in the land of plenty, yet that’s OK, the government is going to fund researchers who have jobs and good starts in life to the tune of 73Million to find out why other children do not!

    • Paul 9.1

      The ensuing comments would suggest many people in NZ would support Hone’s Feed the Kids bill. Let’s hope our government gives a damn…
      Oh I forgot, these NACT folk see hungry poor people as wine waiters who should be at their beck and call and grovel in their midst.

    • Populuxe1 9.2

      Possibly because the roots of the problem are serious, deep, systemic, and require a bit more thrown at it than just money.

    • David H 9.3

      Umm wouldn’t it be easier to just use said 73 million to sort out some of the problemsm instead of Paying some Joe 90 type who’s all theory and no practical!

  9. Rogue Trooper 11

    speaking of hungry

  10. aerobubble 12

    Joyce defensively concludes the decline in postgrads
    numbers isn’t due to the removal of support, but is
    population decline. This immediately would have shown
    up in previous years of undergraduate intakes, as of
    course the declining numbers would have them flowed on.
    So of course Joyce could do nothing about declining
    undergraduate numbers because either they weren’t
    declining or Joyce wasn’t worried that less graduates
    were shrinking the skilled workforce, as growth
    is just around the corner and we don’t need to be
    ready for it, China will take up any slack. 😉
    We can’t afford it, we can’t afford that we benefit
    when China could be.

  11. karol 13

    Lecture on Press freedom now streaming online from AUT:

    Prof Pearson.

    World Press Freedom Day

  12. rosy 14

    According to a visitor from North Shore swimming pools charges for kids should return

    “I’ve never ever had a problem getting into a public pool,” she said. “There is obviously a surge in demand during the holidays – it’s a peak time for them when they have larger than normal volumes, but this is the first time I have ever experienced an inability to get in, and not just at one pool but at all the other pools, too.” She said the entry fees should return.

    “I thought the prices were trivial anyway, it’s a very affordable type of family entertainment … I’ve never heard anyone complain about the price of the pool or decide not to go because it was too expensive.”

    A wild guess that her people that haven’t complained about the previous ‘trivial’ prices are not low income. And now it costs nothing and more kids come to swim so it should cost again so fewer kids swim, but the cost didn’t stop people in the first place? Hmmm, I think she might need to sort that logic out.

  13. Saarbo 15

    Today’s [2/5/13] New Zealand Roy Morgan Poll shows a substantial gain in support for Prime Minister John Key’s National Party to 46.5% (up 6% since April 1-14, 2013). Support for Key’s Coalition partners remains low with the Maori Party 1.5% (down 0.5%), ACT NZ 0.5% (unchanged) and United Future 0.5% (unchanged).

    Support for Labour is 31.5% (down 4%); Greens are 11% (down 2.5%), New Zealand First 4.5% (down 0.5%), Mana Party 1% (up 0.5%), Conservative Party of NZ 2% (up 0.5%) and Others 1% (up 0.5%).
    From Scoop.

    This poll was taken from the 15th to 28th of March. What makes 46.5% people vote for this hopeless bunch? What made 6% change their vote to National?

    This is an atrocious government that looks after the top 1%, how the hell do they get nearly half the Nation voting for them?

    • Alanz 15.1

      This Natz government is so blessed with a really appropriate Labour leader. And then there is the deputy who thinks he is really smart.

      • Colonial Viper 15.1.1

        McFlock thinks Shearer is just fine for the job; shearly 32% or so will win the Treasury benches (with a bit of help from the Greens and others), what more could one possibly want from the Labour Party?

        • McFlock

          Oh, I’d love it if the right choice of leader would simultaneously turn labour into the NZ Socialist Party with support boosted to 70% in the two weeks from one roy morgan to the next.

          But relentlessly nagging about it for months on end would just end up alienating my political allies and making me look like an obsessive, delusional loser.

          So I take a breath, get the fuck over it, and try to improve the real world rather than pining for a leftist rapture.

          • Olwyn

            It isn’t solely about winning an election McFlock – it is also about containing the excesses of an existing government from the opposition benches. Think about Michael Cullen, who with a blistering verbal attack, embarrassed Ruth Richardson into amending a rule by which widows’ benefits would have been paid from the date of application rather than the date of the partner’s death.

            In comparison, the National Government now have carte blanche in their attacks on the powerless. Jacinda and Darien certainly do what they can with what they’ve got, but you never get the sense that the full force of the party is behind them in their efforts, and John Key can cheerfully bring in anti-worker legislation on May Day while damning Shearer with faint praise. If Labour eventually do get the treasury benches under Shearer, with 30% + add-ons, they will not only be a minority government, they will inherit an entrenched tyranny, partly of their own making. The only spark of conviction I have seen from them has been pitted against the left of their own party, not the Tories.

            • McFlock

              No, you don’t get the sense that the full force of the party is behind them.

              • Colonial Viper

                But you do?

                • McFlock

                  Well, except for a few members who throw their toys around because they didn’t get the leader they want, yes.
                  I get the impression that caucus are settling into their roles in the house quite well. More effectively than the nats have been of late.

    • millsy 15.2

      At least you lot arent doing a ‘victory lap’ because a left government is a mathematical possibility.

  14. xtasy 16

    Must Read for all concerned with health care delivery, fair assessments and with WINZ decisions based on such by designated doctors:

    Welcome to our truly “independent”, “fair” and “caring” HEALTH AND DISABILITY COMMISSIONER and his staff at their office.

    As of recent, some bizarre “decisions” have been made upon complaints to the Office of the Health and Disability Commissioner. A recent one was made by Deputy Health and Disability Commissioner Theodora (Theo) Baker.

    I looked up her background on LinkedIn, and by doing an online search, I found revealing info re her last job at “Capsticks LLB”, which is a kind of large, virtually “corporate” style law firm in the UK, which does do a lot of work for NHS, private health care providers, trusts, and organisations that work with health care providers there.

    See these links for intersting information:
    Theo Baker’s personal Linked In “profile” lists her background of having worked for the ‘Health and Disability Commissioner Office’ before – as “Director of Proceedings” from 2004 to 2009. Then she appears to have left that office for an “overseas experience stint” at ‘Capsticks LLB’ in the UK, presumably to get more “legal expertise” in the health sector there – see this:


    See ‘Capsticks LLB’:
    (see comment re good record for “defending” “clinical negligence cases”!!!)

    That corporate law firm has even entered the “social housing” business now:

    Theo Baker returned to New Zealand and did in 2011 accept an appointment by Minister of Health, Tony Ryall, to take up a new job at the ‘Office of the Health and Disability Commissioner’ as DEPUTY HEALTH AND DISABILITY COMMISSIONER. She is according to online info and their staff chart responsible for “disputes resolution”! Anecdotal info about that “disputes resolution” is, that “resolution” appears to be more about “talking over matters” than investigating and holding medical practitioners and other health professionals accountable.

    Now one wonders what motivated her to come back, and why National Party member and now Minister of Health Tony Ryall appointed her.

    There was controversy about the appointment of Anthony Hill as new Commissioner before, which the Otago Daily Times wrote about here:

    (by the way, the author of that article, Stuart McLennan, was a former staff member of that HDC Office himself, as Complaints Assessor!)

    On reading that ODT article, one has to ponder on Dr Des Gorman again, head of a number of key health administrations (now ACC, so far Health Workforce NZ, National Health Board, Medical School of Auckland Uni, etc.), and apparently also a member of an international organisation called the ‘Medical Protection Society’! See this for VERY interesting information:


    So Dr Gorman is a clear advocate for protecting the interests of medical professionals, and he was like other key stakeholders (government and other providers and so forth) tasked with appointing a new Health and Disability Commissioner, whom they chose Anthony Hill for.

    Given this information, does anybody still show any surprise about the lack of “action” and investigations that have been taken and started under the present Commissioner and his “team”? Theo Baker appears to “blend in” well with the office staff, who now operate under a top Commissioner appointed by Tony Ryall.

    Until this day, the 4th of May 2013, only 7 cases have been decided on in this year, which involved proper investigation and an official, publicised statement by that office:

    That is a marked drop from what former, more effective and committed Commissioner Ron Paterson did in the way of investigations and decisions upon complaints.

    So one may wonder, does NO “medical misadventure” or other “mistake” or failing happen in the medical and treatment professions in New Zealand these days? Well, it seems like with “welfare” suddenly figures “improve” under a slash, burn and “off-loading burdens” kind of government, and the “commissioners” and other office holders they have appointed.

    Any person who has had reason to make a complaint to the H+D Commissioner (numbers are rather unchanged or even up with these), and who wonders, why no satisfactory action is taken, just needs to draw their conclusions from reading and studying the info found under links show above!

    Fairness, reasonableness, objectivity and accountability no longer appear to be a priority for many office holders in such key institutions in New Zealand, I am afraid, if they ever were, really!

    Do not be surprised, if you are getting fobbed off, off-loaded, treated with little respect, little dignity and honesty, be this by ACC, WINZ or any health professional, acting under stress, pressures, and demands to perform responsibilities in a cost saving environment. Time to worry, really!

    Strangely one recent “decision” was about a WINZ designated doctor, who is well known to be a much used and preferred “assessor” for MSD and WINZ. The HDC Commissioner appears to have let him off the hook for extremely biased and questionable conduct and unfounded diagnosis and “recommendations”. The “assessment” just happened to be “too long ago”, and his statement “contradicted the one of the complainant”, was the simple conclusion, while an abundance of evidence was apparently not considered worth looking at.

    So the matter was considered to not be worth “investigating further”.

    Add the dots together. New Zealand is NOT the transparent, accountable and fair place that many still think it is.


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